Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Show and Tell Tuesday {9.12.17} What's in My Bag

Linking up with Andrea for blogging regularity purposes as "what's in my bag" isn't a topic that I would normally write about because the answer can basically be summed up in one uninteresting and probably repelling word:


Hi my name is Robin and trash is in my bag.

I would like to blame this on my children, and don't get me wrong, they are major contributors to this problem (ahem, Lego directions), but I'm pretty sure it wasn't much better before I had kids.  Maybe just without the half eaten Z bars.

Last spring, I was at a Bible study and my friend, Maggie, asked me for gum or something, and I laughed and said, "if I can find it!  I'm super disorganized!" which she was hilariously surprised at until I opened my bag and showed her, and we had a good laugh.  Apparently I am good at hiding my messiness.  (Lord, please don't let this be true of my spiritual life!)

So today when I grabbed my purse that I tend to use in fall and winter, to my dismay, I found a half eaten bar that had been in there for months. Gross. Along with about a billion receipts, a fuzz covered paci, gum, lego directions, expired gap cash etc.


Aren't you glad you were curious about my bag?

If I was an organized person, this is what my bag would look like:

1. phone
2. wallet
3. keys
4. my planner
5. kid snack (still in wrapper)
6. gum
7. extra clothes for the newly potty trained child

(I would take a picture of this above scenario, but that would require me to clean out my bag and mama ain't got time for that today.) #goals

Saturday, September 9, 2017

Friday Favorites {9.8.17}

1. Harvey Relief!

My Texas necklace from Jenn's shop:



2. Date Night thanks to:


Last night we were invited to a dinner hosted by Pastorserve.  Upon hearing of the chaos that Harvey wreaked on Houston, Pastorserve immediately mobilized their team from all over the US to be here for the Houston pastors.  We didn't really have any idea what it was about except that they wanted to come in as a support to the pastors in the city many of which have been on the front lines caring for people who have lost everything and in many cases having been personally affected by the flood themselves.  It was heartbreaking to see the exhaustion on each pastor's face as many were low on sleep due to shot nerves, physical labor, emotional heaviness for their congregations, and personal concern as many churches buildings are in need of repair and don't have the finances to continue to miss meeting on Sundays.  The joy and hope during our worship time brought me to tears as did the spiritual and physical care of the Pastorserve team as they encouraged us with the Word, provided us with a delicious meal, prayed for us, and even met some specific financial needs.

In situations like this, pastors are often the first to offer help and the last to accept it, and in the marathon that is Harvey recovery, we need our leaders to stay healthy and encouraged.  Pastorserve is an organization that comes alongside of pastors to do just this.  If you are looking for a ministry to give to for Harvey relief, this is a great option.

We forgot to take a picture at the Pastorserve dinner so here we are after we got back!  Love this guy!!!

3. Little People Shenanigans

"Mom!  We made an immunity idol!"
#survivorfansinthemaking #ionlyletthemwatchthechallenges

Meanwhile, Susu was making her own fun.
She has an obsession with soap...could be worse, right?

Not even sure what is happening here

4.  The many articles written about and for Houston:

5. This.

Happy Friday to you!

Thursday, September 7, 2017

What's Up Wednesday {9.6.17} Edition: What Day Is It?

This What's Up Wednesday post is most likely posted on the wrong day, but this is how most of us in Houston are feeling...

What We're Eating This Week:

Well, after helping our Chick-Fil-A owner friend not waste all of her defrosted chicken during Harvey...

not chicken!

Y'all, Taylor coordinated my dad and neighbors to cook at least 500 pieces of chicken!  We handed it out to shelters, first responders, and tried to eat the rest at a block party for our street, and we still had to freeze about 300 pieces.  It was so yummy, but the #Harvey15 is real folks.

Here is a tiny portion of the sandwiches we handed out to first responders

Chicken Spaghetti made with Chick-fil-a chicken

So this week, because we've been so cooped up the past 10 days, we're letting the little people decide because two weeks into the school year with no school,  Mama is choosing her battles.  Traditional spaghetti it is.

What I'm reminiscing about:

Last Fall.

Fall is my favorite season though it's debatable that Houston has seasons.
1. summer and
2. warm and muggy (not sure what to call this season).

But the beginning of the school year is a new beginning for me, a clean slate, a get back on a normal bedtime schedule, eat healthier, eat all of the fall food (apples!!!), and have a break from each other (school!!!).

This September, fall doesn't exist.  Normal doesn't exist in Houston right now.  We had a week of school and then Harvey hit.  Harvey has devastated my city.  For those of you not living here; the news has moved on, but we are still dealing with after effects of epic proportions.  It has extended summer and made real life go on hold while major street arteries stay flooded - it took me an hour and a half to get from my parents house to my house yesterday; this is usually a 15-20 minute drive.  The last mile took 45 minutes. The grocery stores have no eggs and very little bread.  Schools are still closed till next week and some even the week after that.  Many homes still have 3-4 feet of water in them. News has moved from home rescues to relief workers coming down with nasty bacteria from the filthy standing water.

Mercifully, we were not affected physically by the floodwaters, but for most Houstonians that were not affected physically, we are still affected emotionally.  It was hard for me to let my mother-in-law watch my children across town yesterday, I was woken up by thunder two nights ago and couldn't get back to sleep, and I wake up exhausted even though I'm getting the same amount of sleep I usually get. My friend, Hillary, shared this on Facebook the other day, and it gave words to this feeling many of us have here:

What I'm Loving

All of the relief efforts for Houston!  My favorite is what Jenn's company is doing:

Click here to see her Harvey Relief necklace line.  100% of the proceeds will go to Harvey Relief (these photos are some of the supplies they have purchased so far for the GRB shelter).

What We've Been Up to

Harvey Relief.  As a mom with little kids this mostly looks like making lots of food for various people though here is a funny break in all of that - I found myself alone in my house (thank you Mia for taking my kids for the day) after running around all day getting errands done and finally taking a break at 3 to eat lunch, and my friend Kara texted Jenn and me to see what we were up to:

Busted!  Sometimes you just have to laugh.  That is Survivor Season 3 FYI.

What I'm dreading

The possibility of school being postponed another week.

What I'm working on

Letting go of any part of my "normal" that I should leave behind. (Credit)

What I'm excited about

Our upcoming anniversary trip to Colorado

What I'm watching/reading



I just finished The Little Paris Bookshop by Nina George, and it was an interesting read though not what I expected.  It paints a good picture of what idolizing a person does to you.


What I'm listening to

During the day I stream Mozart Piano Quartet on Pandora because in a house full of children, give me all the peaceful music.  In the evenings,  I've been foregoing my typical Pandora station, "Italian Cooking Music" (think Dean Martin) for this youtube station, French Cafe music.

What I'm wearing

My summer uniform: denim shorts and a solid color t-shirt

Worst lighting ever!


{via} I got mine from a clothing swap, but these are similar


What I'm doing this weekend

I'm kind of creeped out to put this on the internet...tell you about it next week, mkay? I'm excited about it though!

What I'm looking forward to next month

Pumpkins and hopefully cool weather! #eternalHoustonweatheroptimist

What else is new

About to start a minor remodel in our kitchen because our oven died, and our new one doesn't fit in the old space. #badtiming #contractorsinhighdemandinHoustonrightnow #goodthingmydadisacontractor

Friday, August 25, 2017

Friday Favorites {8.25.17}: Hurricane Edition

I'm going to nonchalantly come back here and pretend that it hasn't been 18 months since I've blogged...

This post is brought to you compliments of Hurricane Harvey and "Frozen"

Friday Favorites

#1 My bestie who has a generator built into her house
 #hurricaneharvey #potentialfamilysleepover #acisessentialinaugust

I'll let you know if we go swimming...

#2 Daddy making breakfast

Yesterday I asked Taylor to head to the grocery store on his way home from work to grab us bread before the impending storm.  There was no bread left in the store, so he got these cinnamon rolls instead...we'll just go with that being close to what I asked him to get.  Some little people in our house were really happy about them this morning though!  #thehurricanemademedoit

#3 Blue corn chips from Trader Joe's

I won't pretend to be the healthiest eater (give me all the carbs), so usually I think blue corn chips taste like cardboard, but after having some with the best hummus ever the other day at my friend's house, I decided to give these a try and I am glad I did!  #hurricanefood 
Next I went to HEB to get the hummus, but there was a LINE to get inside, so we decided hummus wasn't an essential during the storm.  #priorities

#4 Self-taught gainer!

Seth was like, "Hey mom! Is this a back flip?!"  I couldn't believe it. #hegetsthisfrommysideofthefamily

#5 Second Annual Cousin Camp!

#6 Family Discipleship

I found them like this this morning - he was reading to her from this children's Bible and she was asking questions.  Melt my heart!  #familydiscipleship

Monday, February 29, 2016

What's Your Number?

Started writing this last Tuesday, but a crazy week got in the way and I never posted it...

Shay wrote on the topic: "what's your hardest number when having kids?" this week (last week!) and I thought it was fun, so I decided to write my own post on the subject.

This post was meant for Tuesday (last Tuesday!).

My master blog plan was to do What's Up Wednesday for Wednesday, and Friday Favorites for today, but suffice it to say it's been a hard week.  Yay for goals - the incompletion of them has a lot to do with this post and "what my number" is!

I always wanted to be a mom.  I loved playing dolls and started naming my children in elementary school (obviously my taste changed by the time I actually had kids since my daughters aren't named Tiffani (aka Kelly Kapowski and Stephanie (as in Tanner) and Joe (as in McIntire) - those of you who get this, you are my people.).  Actually having children was a lot different than I could have imagined.

First of all, it didn't just happen like we thought it would.  You can read about each of my second trimester miscarriages here and here.  Children truly are a blessing from the Lord - we learned this through suffering and loss.  The other morning, I came across this in my Bible - I read a psalm a day each morning at the beginning of my time with the Lord.

On July 27, 2009, the due date of my first baby, I "just happened" to be on Psalm 127.  What an encouragement from the Lord, but it took faith to believe this was true.  So on that day back in 2009, I noted it with Tristan's due date forcing myself in ink to memorialize this promise even though the "what ifs" still hung in the air.  Then as I came across it during the first year of each of my kids' lives, I got to write out God's faithfulness and his promise fulfilled to us in Seth, Avery, and Susannah.  I love seeing each birth date written in my Bible every time I read that passage.  He's Always Been Faithful.

I know that no matter if you have children or not that this verse is true, and I'm aware that not all have the same ending to this part of their story as I do, but I've learned through the suffering of these two losses that the reward is in the wait, the reward is Him whom we're waiting with.  The children are a blessing absolutely, but the ultimate blessing is God Himself who draws us in and binds us to Himself when we need Him the most.

So when I found out that I was pregnant with Seth, we were elated.  After losing Tristan, I was more aware of what a gift he was than I probably would've been and hoped that the Lord would use that to help us through the sleepless nights.  Thankfully he was a very peaceful baby,  but we had some issues with nursing,  and I struggled with some post-partum baby blues (and we were in the final planning stages of moving to Scotland), so as you may have guessed, I was slightly overwhelmed.

Emotionally going from 0 to 1 was the hardest.  Seth rocked our world, and redefined our family. There were growing pains to be sure, but the Lord used his birth and our move overseas to shape our family.

Avery was born 21 months later and she was the easiest baby known to man.  Always happy, LOVED her bed, nursed like a champ.  She is still my best sleeper.  Everything about going from 1 to 2 was incredibly easier than 0 to 1.  I felt prepared, I was able to sleep when she slept instead of hovering over her making sure she was still breathing. :) Transitioning from 1-2?  Piece of cake (until she turned 2, but that's a post for another time ;)).

We struggled about when to have baby 3.  We went back and forth on the timing (should we wait till after we're done in Scotland?  But we want them close in age... etc etc).  Finally one of our friends who has 8 kids told us, "it's never the right time." And that sealed the deal.  William was on the way - due exactly 2 days before Avery's second birthday.  Soon into my pregnancy, we heard the news that he wouldn't make it to term.  Again the Lord was faithful to hold and to heal.

After hearing from the doctor that William's short life wasn't due to any genetic concerns, we were given the go ahead for more children, and Susannah Mackenzie was soon on the way.

"Who stole the cookie from the cookie jar?"

I'll let you guess what our hardest number is by looking at that picture...


While going from 0-1 was hardest emotionally, going from 2-3 has been hardest life adjustment. Emotionally not so hard, but physically and logistically running a household with 3 kiddos born in the span of  4 years = Crazytown a lot of the time.

This  little girl has rocked our little world.  She is the cutest little toot, but man is she busy!  Turn your back for 2 seconds and she's stealing big brother's valentine chocolate, climbing up the bunk bed ladder, jumping off the coffee table, I could go on and on.  Her namesake warned me that once we had 3, there would be no time to myself.  I didn't believe her then, but I have learned.  3=NO time.  I feel like a sherpa and a cat herder, but I wouldn't have it any other way!

(Susannah's behind me in her cute smocked dress lying on the floor post tantrum refusing to get in the picture...)

And since it's already nuts over here...should we add one more to the party?  Jury's still out :)